If you give me the funk, I’m gonna take it
by Steve Simon, Marrow
750 milliliters St. George California Agricole Rum
1 cup St. George Raspberry Liqueur
1 3/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup galangal falernum*
1 1/4 cup orange and lemon oleo saccharum**
1 bottle of brut Champagne
Various tropical ice cubes***
*To make falernum, blanch 1 1/2 cups of almonds in 1 quart of water for 30 minutes and drain. Chop almonds, add one quart of water and let rest overnight, preferably without skin. In a sauce pan, heat 4 star anise pods with a tablespoon of allspice and 2 tablespoons of cloves. After one minute, add almonds with water to sauce pan. Heat. Add 1 quart of sugar and 1 cup chopped galangal. Heat until boiling, stirring constantly for 15 minutes. Remove from heat. After cooled, add the zest of 3 limes. Keep refrigerated for one day. Strain and add 1 ounce of overproof rum per every 5 ounces of falernum. Stir and bottle.
*To make oleo, peel 9 lemons and 4 oranges taking as little pith as possible and add 2 ounces of sugar per fruit peeled. Muddle and let sit overnight.
***To make tropical ice, add raspberries/pineapples/oranges/lemons to food processor with water. Strain and freeze in spheres.
Add oleo to punch bowl first. Add remaining ingredients to bowl and stir. Chill punch until day of party. On day of, add tropical ice spheres to bowl. Top with Champagne, and save the rest for guests. Serve in cups over small cubes of tropical ice.
Advanced: For extra flare, Simon lit rum in a wine glass on fire, and poured it over a pineapple top in the center of the bowl. While this isn’t ideal for the home bartender, you could create a similar presentation. Freeze only the top of a pineapple in a shallow pan of water, and place in the punch for a festive centerpiece.
You can find the recipes of all five finalists at IndyStar.com. http://www.indystar.com/story/life/food/2015/11/24/these-arent-your-grandmas-punch-recipes/75600350/